I apologize for the lack of blogging on my part recently. I haven't forgotten about you, trust me, I just haven't had much time.
It's not you, it's me.
If you think that's the first time I've used that line, well, it's not.
Anyways, between working on playoff previews, normal workload, making playoff travel plans and trying to figure out just what the heck the Angels are going to do in the first round against Boston, I have skirted my responsibilities as a blogger and for that, I apologize.
So, today, on the final day of the regular season, with one eye on the National League race, another on working on the playoff info for the paper, and one more (three eyes?!) on my MVP ballot, I have all kinds of fun to write about.
First, if you were the Angels, who would you take into the bullpen? Ervin Santana, Dustin Moseley, Bartolo Colon, Chris Bootcheck? How can the team rely on Colon and Santana when they've been unreliable all season and Moseley and Bootcheck have?
I do know that the Angels really like Santana pitching out of the 'pen (why, I have no idea, but they do) and I know that Moseley's arm is out of whack lately - his second-half ERA is over six - and Bootcheck has been solid and can pitch in several roles. Colon can throw the stuff out of the ball for one inning or perhaps pitch two or three in a pinch.
What would you do?
And, what should the Angels do with the final roster spots with their position players? I have a feeling that Nathan Haynes makes the team since Gary Matthews Jr. (knee) and Vladimir Guerrero (triceps) are both nicked up. But what do you do with Erick Aybar, or Kendry Morales or even Robb Quinlan who hasn't had a very good year?
My guess, not very educated, but just on feel would be that Santana and Bootcheck make the team, as does Haynes, Quinlan and Morales. Aybar is out because Haynes can be the pinch-runner and Maicer Izturis can move around in the infield defensively. If a player is hurt, a new rule allows teams to sub an injured player out, so that leaves Aybar available if necessary through injury.
Joe Saunders will not make a start since the team will play five games in eight days but will be with the team.
As far as my MVP ballot, well, anyone other than Alex Rodriguez at No. 1 would be blasphemous. Now, it's just a matter of putting the remainder of the top-10 together.
E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org for any playoff questions, comments, thoughts or suggestions.